While this past season was largely disappointing for Napoli, one good thing came out of it: their run to the Europa League semifinal gave them a big boost in the UEFA club coefficient standings. They now stand as the 20th ranked club in Europe and the second-best team in Italy in UEFA's rankings.
The UEFA coefficient ranking is based on clubs' performances in European competitions, meaning the Champions League and Europa League. Points are awarded at varying levels for wins, draws, and which round you play in which of the two competitions. Games in the Champions League are, obviously, worth more than in the Europa League, but a deep Europa run can be worth more than an inglorious stay in the Champions League that ends in the group stage, as demonstrated by the 25.8 points earned by Napoli this past season compared to the 15.8 Roma managed.
Napoli's standing is a full 11 places higher than they were a year ago, an impressive jump considering they didn't have Champions League football to help out. In fact, that 25.8 point haul was the eighth best in Europe, behind only some of the Champions League elite and Europa champions Sevilla. Napoli finished with more coefficient points than any team in England, and even Dnipro, who beat Napoli in that semifinal, only managed 21 points because of how many of their Europa matches ended in draws instead of wins.
The rise in the standings is helpful for Napoli because the coefficient rankings help determine which teams are seeded on which side or pot of a draw in European competitions. While that seeding certainly didn't help Napoli last year in the Champions League playoff, winding up against the best non-seeded team in that draw with Athletic Bilbao, it can help create easier group stage matchups and qualifying draws down the line. Plus, being regarded as one of the 20 best teams in Europe isn't half bad in and of itself.
The only team in Italy ranked higher right now is Juventus, who used their run to the Champions League final to jump from 16th to 14th in the standings. They probably could have gotten higher up in the standings, but their European struggles in 2011 and 2012 hurt their place because of the five-year tally system UEFA uses in the coefficient rankings.
The next highest team in the UEFA rankings right now is AC Milan at 22, who still have the past four years of Champions League knockout round berths to prop up their standing. Their absence from Europe altogether this past season hurt, though, as evidenced by their 11 spot slide down the standings. Inter also slid 11 places in the standings, falling from 13th to 24th despite a decent points haul thanks to their 2010 Champions League title no longer propping them up.
On the rise were Fiorentina and Roma, who now sit in 39th and 46th in the rankings, respectively. Fiorentina's Europa semifinal run helped them climb six spots, and while Roma's first European adventure since 2011 wasn't exactly impressive, it was still a heck of a lot better for their standings than not playing at all. Torino also debuted in the rankings at 78th after a decent first showing in the Europa League.